Katy Perry is no stranger to legal real estate battles (after all, nuns did sue her over ownership of an L.A. monastery), and the pop star won a big victory in court this week re: the sale of another SoCal property. Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Joseph Lipner ruled on Tuesday that Perry and her husband, Orlando Bloom’s, 2020 purchase of a Montecito mansion was, in fact, kosher.
Perry and Bloom signed a contract with Carl Westcott, the 83-year-old founder of 1-800-Flowers, in 2020 to buy the home from him for $15 million, just months after Westcott himself had bought the home for $11.25 million. Days later, Westcott argued that he was not in the right mind to make such a deal, claiming he had been taking painkillers after a major surgery, which had impaired his mental faculties.
Lawyers also argued that Westcott has Huntington’s Disease, a rare neurological condition, and medical records suggest he was showing early signs of dementia.
The judge, however, found that Westcott presented “no credible evidence” that he lacked the mental capacity to sign the deal with Perry and Bloom in—so the deal remains.
According to Rolling Stone, in addition to proceeding with the sale, Perry is seeking $1.4 million in damages to cover what she could have earned from renting out the house if the sale had moved forward in 2020.
A hearing is set for February to determine if further damages will be granted.
Chart Westcott, one of the seller’s adult children, and his family are now pushing for legislation to protect the elderly against financial abuse in real estate transactions. Per Inman, the proposed act, called Protecting Elder Realty for Retirement Years Act or the “Katy PERRY Act,” seeks to “address the risks of elder financial abuse, especially as it relates to property and real estate sales and transfers. The Act establishes a 72-hour cool-down period during which either party involved in a contract for conveyance of a personal residence, in which one party is over the age of 75, can rescind the agreement without penalty.”
Katy Perry photo by Gavin Bond courtesy ABC